Posts Tagged ‘wood chip’

Til recently, I’d only dealt with the very end of the wood chip supply chain, the part where the chips arrive in a lorry, ready to be tipped into the chip store and burned in the boiler. But in connection with a number of new projects, I’ll be more closely involved in the whole woodchip lifecycle: chipping, drying, storing, delivery etc. And while getting to grips with some practicalities a few interesting quirks have come to light. Maybe not earth-shattering, but interesting just the same so I thought I’d note a couple down here.

First, when you buy wood chip don’t forget you’re paying for water. So if you hold on to that chip for any length of time in the right conditions it will dry further, reducing your tonnage and so increasing your cost per tonne. For example, if you buy a tonne of fresh wood chip at 55% moisture content for £45 and then store it under cover and let it dry out, here’s how the total mass and £/tonne will change as the chip dries to around 25% moisture.

Total mass and £/t for a tonne of wood chip as it dries

Fig 1 – Total mass and £/t for a tonne of wood chip as it dries

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